The Trust Awards of £500 and a Commemorative Certificate are made each year to outstanding brass musicians to assist their studies and training, as well as furthering their musical careers. The Trustees are David Read MBE, Dr. Robert Childs, James Scott, Keith Hollinshead, Elgar Howarth, Frank Hodges, and Martin Mortimer.
Born in Hebden Bridge, Yorkshire, Harry Mortimer was the son of the famous band conductor Fred Mortimer. Following relocation to Luton in 1913, Harry became Principal Cornet for the the Luton Red Cross Band and his father Conductor. In 1923 Luton band became the only southern band ever to win the National Championships.
In late 1924 the Mortimers moved to Fodens and, playing under the baton of Fred, and alongside brothers Alex and Rex that Harry as Principal Cornet really flourished. In the decade that followed, Foden's enjoyed magnificent success including seven National wins.
During this period he also played Trumpet with the Halle Orchestra, Liverpool Philharmonic and the BBC Northern Orchestra and through his friendships and contacts among classical musicians he persuaded such conductors as Sir Hamilton Harty, Sir Adrian Boult and Sir Malcolm Sargeant to conduct brass bands.
In 1942 he was appointed Supervisor for Brass and Military band broadcasts at the BBC and further advanced the cause of brass bands, a position he held for 22 years.
He became the professional conductor of the very best of Britain's brass bands including the Fairey Aviation Works Band, Fodens Motor Works, Black Dyke Mills, Munn and Feltons and Morris Motors and was practically unbeatable on the contest stage. The eighteen wins he gained conducting in the British Open and National Championships is a post war record.
In the mid 1950s Harry Mortimer retired from competition conducting and he then concentrated on the brass orchestra he had formed which included Fairey, Fodens and Morris Motors Bands. This combination gave popular concerts to packed audiences throughout the country.
In his later years he took full responsibility for the organising and administration of the British Open Contest in Manchester and with the enormous support of his wife Margaret was able to maintain the high standards of this long established event which this year itself celebrates its 150th birthday.
He was awarded the OBE and later the CBE for his services to the brass band movement. In 1978 a television programme Harry Mortimer's World of Music proved so popular that it had to be repeated within six months. BBC television produced a special programme to celebrate his 80th birthday and EMI issued Man of Brass - a collection of his recordings between 1926 and 1950 also to mark his 80th birthday - such was the esteem in which he was held.
He was particularly proud to be the president of the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain and it was fitting that when he died he left a considerable sum of money to be placed in trust (The Harry Mortimer Memorial Trust) to help promote brass band music and in particular young brass players.
Birmingham Conservatoire Christopher Musgrave
Chris has been playing the Cornet since he was 10, and was soon involved in brass bands when he joined the Eccleston Brass Band. In2012, he was awarded a position to study music at BirminghamConservatoire, being taught by Ian Porthouse and Richard Marshall. During his four years at the Conservatoire, he played in the Conservatoire Brass Band, Wind Orchestra and Symphony Orchestra. In the brass band he played Principal Cornet in joint concerts with the Band of the Royal Corps of Signals and Tredegar Town Band, as well as playing Soprano Cornet at the UniBrass competition in Warwick. In 2013, Chris joined the Tredegar Town Band and over the three years since, he has competed and performed in some of the UK’s premier concert venues, including Symphony Hall, The Sage, Gateshead and the Royal Albert Hall. Other highlights in his time at Tredegar include recording the score and attending the premiere of ‘Pride’in 2014, and playing with the Rambert Ballet at Sadlers WellsTheatre for ‘Dark Arteries’ in 2015. Chris is looking forward to new challenges upon leaving Birmingham Conservatoire, in particular playing with the Milnrow Band on Soprano Cornet at the British Open today. He is also looking to start providing tuition to the younger members of his local band, with the view to branching out into local schools and other bands. Chris proposes to put his Award towards the purchase of a new Soprano Cornet, as well as tuition books and music needed to help in his teaching.
Guildhall School of Music
Kaitlin is a cornet and trumpet player with a background playing in the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain, where she won the Phillip McCann Cornet Award 2012, as well as the Young Musicians Symphony Orchestra. She has been a member of Jaguar Land Rover Band since 2006 and also has considerable solo experience playing both in the UK and abroad. Kaitlin has undertaken work as a brass teacher for Brent Youth Service, and would like to consider a career in brass teaching as well as progressing her playing career. Katlin received the endorsement of her tutor at Guildhall, Richard Benjafield as being the outstanding Guildhall candidate for the Award.
Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama William Norman
William's roots lie in Gloucestershire where he started learning the cornet with Tewkesbury Town Training Band. From the moment he picked up his instrument, as he says, ‘he was hooked’! He progressed to Flowers Youth Band, then to Flowers playing at the British Open, National Championships and Brass in Concert. William attributes the achievement of his ambitions to one day play for ‘the best band in the world’ to thein credible support from his parents (his mother was herself a brass bander) who accompanied him to rehearsals and performances, often travelling long distances.Williiam auditioned for the Royal Welsh College being offered a place,and also accepted an invitation from Philip Harper to join Cory. Having achieved one of his ambitions, William rejoined Flowers , this time on the Flugel Horn seat, winning ‘best flugel horn’ at Brass in Concert 2015. He is currently playing with TredegarTown band.
University of Huddersfield Daniel McLaughlin
Daniel is a trombone player who hails from Cockermouth in Cumbria. He started his career aged 10 on second trombone with Dearham Brass Band before progressing to Carlton Main, where he competed at the British Open, National Finals and Brass in Concert. He studied Trombone and conducting at Huddersfield, gaining a First Class degree BMus and winning the Rodwell Prize. In addition to his playing career, Daniel started brass band conducting under the direction of Phillip McCann, as well as conducting a number of local bands. He recently fulfilled a childhood ambition by being offered the second trombone seat at Grimethorpe Colliey,and is commencing a further course in Music Performance at the Royal Northern College later this month. Daniel proposes to use his award towards purchasing a new trombone.
Toby has just completed his degree at Salford with First Class Honours. He was also awarded the Iwan Williams Performance Award and the Roy Newsome Conducting Award, having achieved the highest mark this year in both disciplines. He has been a member of Fodens,Grimethorpe Colliery Yorkshire Building Society and Brighouse and Rastrick Band. Toby will shortly be commencing studies at Manchester Metropolitan University on the PGCE Specialist Instrument Teaching Course, and has been given the opportunity of conducting rehearsals of Hazel Grove and Besses O’Th’Barn to gain further experience. He proposes to use the award to assist with repairs to his trombone as well as purchasing a laptop for his studies.